By TOMMY REZAC
St. Joseph Post
It’s no secret that Patrick Mahomes is a terrific quarterback, but also a strong communicator and leader.
Mahomes is surrounded by many young, new players this year as the team continues their work at training camp in St. Joseph.
Mahomes has many new targets at receiver - Juju Smith-Schuster, Marquez Valdez-Scantling, Josh Gordon and Skyy More among them.
Coach Andy Reid says the cohesion that Mahomes already has with these receivers is showing.
"It's just a matter and the receivers being on the same page," Reid said Friday. "The more they do it, the better they're going to be. With Skyy being a young kid, he's made a couple of good plays. It's him learning the game. He's very strong. He's got great feet and very strong at the core."
"I think you guys know (Mahomes) is a great communicator. He's using that skill that he has to talk to these new players. That's different for him. This is a new thing for him, with all of the guys we have coming in here who are new. I think he's handling that great. He's a tremendous leader and has always been that."
Tight end Jody Forston is another one making a case for more targets early on in camp. Mecole Hardman also had a strong day Friday.
The catch of the day was from Moore, who had a diving catch on a deep slant route early on in practice.
"He's a smaller guy as far as height, but he's thicker as far as a receiver," Mahomes said of Moore - a second-round draft pick out of Western Michigan this year. "I think you see that. He's made a lot of tough, contested catches over the middle. He's thinking a lot, because he's a rookie getting thrown into the offense and we're not holding back at all."
"You can tell he knows what he's doing. He runs some great routes, has great releases. I think he can be a big part of our offense moving forward."
Outside of the ongoing saga with left tackle Orlando Brown Jr., the Chiefs have had a smooth start to training camp with no new injuries through the first three practices.
Reid says the team is getting exactly what they need from these workouts right now.
"Great competition and I like the energy level," he said. "Offense is making plays, defense is making plays. We're getting better every day and that's the objective here."
Saturday will be the last day of half-pads before the team puts on full pads Monday. The Chiefs will have the day off from camp on Sunday.
Reid said newly signed defensive end Carlos Dunlap should be at training camp by Wednesday, as he's taking care of family affairs at the moment. Dunlap was signed by the Chiefs Thursday.
The 33-year-old had spent 10 seasons in Cincinnati before being traded to Seattle during the 2020 season. The 6-6 linemen had 8.5 sacks and seven pass breakups in 2021. In fact, Dunlap's 96 career sacks are the eighth most in the NFL since 2010.
"He'll work into the mix at the defensive end position," Reid said of Dunlap. "It's a nice addition. Obviously, he's been doing this awhile. He can still roll, so we look forward to bringing him into the mix there."
Future in St. Joseph
This is the 12th year of Chiefs training camp at Missouri Western, and team leadership is pleased with how things are going.
Chiefs CEO Clark Hunt says Reid and the rest of the coaching staff enjoy the atmosphere that Missouri Western and St. Joseph provide each year.
"It's been fantastic for the team," Hunt said. "Andy and his staff really enjoy being here. They believe this environment is really conducive to getting the guys ready. The University has been very responsive over the course of our relationship in terms of making changes in order to help the experience be better."
This is the last year that the Chiefs are required to be in St. Joseph according to the current agreement, though it can be extended two years.
Hunt and president Mark Donovan have both said the agreement will be evaluated after camp is over. Both, however, have expressed hopes of being back in St. Joseph in the future.
"From my vantage point so far, this has been one of the best camps or starts to camp," Hunt said. "(The agreement) is something we'll evaluate once camp is done. We do that every year. Certainly, I hope we'll be back in the future."
You can follow Tommy on Twitter @TommyKFEQ and St. Joseph Post @StJosephPost.